The SpaceX CEO hosted the weekly entertainment show yesterday to mixed reviews, with some calling the episode “cringeworthy”. But during his opening monologue, Mr Musk shared he is on the autism spectrum for the first time.
Joking about his eccentric social media presence and way of speaking, Mr Musk told the SNL studio audience about being on the spectrum.
He said: “I don’t always have a lot of intonation or variation in how I speak . which I’m told makes for great comedy.
“I’m actually making history tonight as the first person with Asperger’s to host SNL.
“Or at least the first to admit it.”
The revelation was met with applause from the studio audience.
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Elon Musk news: The CEO’S SNL appearance saw him share he has Asperger’s syndrome
Elon Musk news: Social media users praised Musk for sharing he is on the spectrum
Some Twitter users took Mr Musk to task for his claim of being the first person with Asperger’s to host SNL.
Dan Aykroyd, starring in Ghostbusters and an original cast member of SNL, was diagnosed with Asperger’s as a child and hosted the programme in 2003.
One user joked: “Dan Aykroyd was the actual first person with Asperger’s on SNL, but Elon Musk bought the patent.”
Another added: “Good on Musk for being open about his autism. But it takes seconds of research to find he was not the first.”
Elon Musk news: Others criticised him for ignoring Dan Aykroyd, former SNL host, when saying he was the ‘first person with Asperger’s to host’
Elon Musk news: Aspergers is no longer used as a medical term, as it is considered to be part of the Autism spectrum
But many users praised the SpaceX CEO for being open about having Asperger’s, hoping his speech could help bring visibility to those with Autism.
One said: “Elon Musk just crushing. And admitting proudly he has Asperger’s. Good on you Elon!”
Another added: “The fact that Elon musk coming out as being on the autism spectrum is such big news just further demonstrates most peoples fundamental lack of understanding of autism.
“Based on what we know, it’s not at all surprising or shocking, in fact, it’s consistent.”
One Twitter user expressed fears Mr Musk’s Asperger’s would “kickstart the worst discourse cycle”.
Asperger’s syndrome is no longer recognised as a diagnosis, and was retired in 2013 by the American Psychiatric Association (APA).
The term was eliminated and is now considered as part of the Autism Spectrum Disorder, as of the fifth edition of the APA’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
The term also fell out of usage as Austrian pediatrician Dr Hans Asperger, after whom the syndrome was named, was reportedly involved in the Nazi regime.
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Mr Musk also joked about his son’s unusual name, X Æ A-12, in the programme.
In the opening monologue, he said: “It’s pronounced cat running across keyboard.”
Later in the programme, the SpaceX CEO spoke about the cryptocurrency Dogecoin.
The currency was created in 2013 by a pair of software workers, and earlier this year it jumped in value by 50 percent after Mr Musk dubbed it “the people’s crypto”.
Read More: Hollywood News